Shanghai's export of primary agricultural products dipped 0.6 percent last year from a year earlier, the Shanghai Statistics Bureau said today.
The figure was a mixture of big drops in staple foodstuff, including pork and vegetable, and increases in higher-level products such as decorative plants and fish, the bureau said.
The weight of export in the city's overall agricultural produce fell to 6.8 percent last year from 7.4 percent in 2006.
"The outcome was partly generated from the policies of curbing food export in the later half of last year to support domestic supply amid surging consumer prices," said Jin Jiaying, an analyst with the bureau.
"The figure only dropped slightly because the market has developed a few new areas to meet or create demand in the international market."
In Jin's view, it was an improved structure for export that Shanghai should stick to.
Last year, export of vegetable and piglets dropped 13.6 percent and 29.1 percent respectively compared with a year earlier. Products such as eggs, garlic and pearls all reported big cuts in export.
In comparison, the export of decorative plants increased 71.3 percent while decorative fish such as goldfish saw their export gain 4.6 times from 2006. They mainly went to countries in East and South Asia, including Japan and Singapore.
China's export faces tremendous uncertainties this year against the backdrop of possible recession in the United States and a stronger yuan which adds costs for export.
To meet the challenges, Shanghai will make more efforts to study the international market and assess different needs in each country. Also, the city will improve a licensing system to build reliable brands of agricultural products and raise their awareness in the international market, the bureau said.
(China Daily March 25, 2008)